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Fri

26

Jan

2007

Is Dershowitz qualified to do book reviews?
Friday, 26 January 2007 21:34
by Ahmed Amr

As cheerleaders for Israel go, it is hard to beat Alan Dershowitz. If ever there was a coward and a hypocrite – it has to be this Likudnik operator who postures as a ‘liberal’ in search of an ‘honest debate’ on the merits of tormenting the Palestinians.

Debate this, Alan. On March 28, 1988 – you published an article in the Seattle Times titled “Israel is still a genuine democracy.” I recall the article because I responded to it with an editorial of my own. I challenge you to defend that article in a public forum.

In that particular work of fiction, you characterized the repression of the Palestinians as “occasional overreactions.” Dr Jennifer Leaning of the Harvard Medical School had a different take. Commenting on the behavior of the Israeli troops during the first Intifada, she reported that “they do not appear to be out of control. That is one of the darker things we saw. These are not aberrations. The pattern is controlled, a systematic pattern over a wide geographical area. It’s as if they’ve been instructed.”

In a contemporary Haaretz article, Doctor Charles Greenbaum, a psychologist at Hebrew University, revealed that Israeli officers had been given orders “to break property, break legs and arms, hit people even while not dispersing a demonstration.”  He continued: “soldiers will laugh at an incident when they beat people up or imitate a woman who was screaming because they took away her child.”

Who would have expected any other results from an official policy of “force, might and beatings” intended to “put the fear of death into Arabs?” Dershowitz might recall that the authors of these words were Prime Minister Shamir and Defense Minister Rabin.
Surely, a Harvard professor of law realized before writing his discredited apologia that the Palestinians in the occupied territories lived under military law. He must have read somewhere that collective punishment such as curfews; house demolition and arbitrary land confiscation are part and parcel of Israel’s “Iron fist” policies.  Again, the “iron fist” label came from Rabin himself.

So much for “occasional overreactions.”

Now lets look at the Apartheid charges that get Dershowitz bent out of shape. I’ll again quote what Martin Gurbus wrote at the time in a New York Times article dated Jan.26, 1988.

“Palestinians in those occupied territories are tried in military courts without enjoying fundamental legal rights. But Israelis who commit crimes against Palestinians are tried in nonmilitary courts and given the full protection of a fine legal system.”

“Palestinian young men facing up to 10 years for rock throwing are routinely denied pretrial release, while Jewish settlers and soldiers accused of seriously injuring Palestinians may not even be charged with crimes, and, if they are, they are routinely given bail.” Two people, two sets of law books depending on one’s ethnicity. They have a word for that – Apartheid.

Always the con artist, Dershowitz hailed the fact that Palestinians had “access” to petition the Israeli Supreme Court. But he failed to mention that Palestinian lawyers from the West Bank and Gaza were not allowed to appear before that court. If an Israeli lawyer chose to take the occasional case, success was unlikely, due to the deference shown by that court to the military’s “security” argument.

As a Palestinian put it “they take our land for security reasons. They take our jobs for security reasons. And when we ask them how it happens that our lands and our jobs threaten the security of Israel – they do not tell us. Why not? For security reasons.”  

Now, Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza can’t marry Israeli Arabs – not if they want to live together. Why? Security reasons. The Apartheid wall. Security reasons. Blanketing Lebanon with a million cluster bombs. Security reasons.

In his article Dershowitz made a ‘generous’ offer to the Palestinians “Any Arab who dislikes life in Israel is, of course, entirely free to leave.” That’s classical Zionism. Make the indigenous Palestinians miserable enough to abandon their native lands.    

So, what exactly qualifies Dershowitz to do review Carter’s book? Is this not the same Harvard Law professor who was an avid supporter of Joan Peter’s historical hoax “From Time Immemorial.” Dershowitz liked Joan Peter’s canards enough to plagiarize them. Want to see the evidence? Read “Alan Dershowitz Exposed” by Norman Finkelstien.  

This scam artist from Harvard stands accused of writing dozens of apologias to defend the deplorable treatment of the Palestinians. Dershowitz is the kind of ‘liberal’ who supports torture.  He lies and plagiarizes other people’s lies. If Dershowitz had an ounce of integrity, he would have registered as an Israeli lobbyist long ago. And if Harvard Law School had an ounce of courage, they would have sent him to the back of the unemployment line after the plagiarism scam.

The only reason anybody takes this fanatical Likudnik seriously is because of his friends in high media places - the kind of friends that routinely feign ignorance of this Harvard professor’s track record. Dershowitz is the type of lawyer who defends OJ Samson in the morning and Ariel Sharon’s war crimes during his lunch break.  The fact that he still passes for an ‘intellectual’ is an indictment of a cowardly American ‘Ivy League’ establishment that trembles in fear of being labeled anti-Semitic.  In the process these ‘academics’ have become silent conspirators in the systematic repression of the Palestinian people.

If there is one thing that should recommend Carter’s book – it has to be a Dershowitz book review.
For more dirt on both Dershowitz and Brandies - read “the Dershowitz treatment” – also by Norman Finkelstien.

So, don’t forget to pick up your copy of Carter’s  "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid.” It’s the best way to instruct Dershowitz on the value of personal integrity.

Ahmed Amr is the editor of NileMedia.com
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WHAT APARTHEID?? by Stuart Sontag
Actually, today we need to ask the question "what occupation"?

The "Palestinians" are not "occupied" by Israel at all. The Israelis expelled there own people from Gaza 2years ago and since then Gaza has been run by rival gangs of Fatah, Hamas and Islamic Jihad thugs who have brought there own people into a state of dispair. On the West Bank, the "Palestinians" live an autonomous existence.

The only time there are problem is when the Palestinians attempt to infiltrate into Israel and mount terrorism attacks. The much maligned security barrier which is 90% fence serves one purpose to separate Palestinian killers from their intended Israeli civilian targets. It is true that the barriers, road blocks and checkpoints which Palestinian terrorism has forced upon Israelis do create hardships and frustration for many Palestinians but this is an unfortunate consequence of Palestinian official policies. Afterall, the Palestinians voted in Hamas in their most recent elections and Hamas platform is an unambiguous program to wipe Israel off the map.

The Palestinians have actually been pretty cunning in their manipulation of Western Guilt and in their duping of Western Media. Firstly they attack Israeli civilians with ever more sinister modes of terrorism culminating in the ultimate "smart bomb" the indoctrinated suicide bomber, forcing Israelis to adopt pregressivley more thorough physical means of preventing Palestinian access to Israeli civilians. Next the Palestinians cry "apartheid" to the Western media and claim that old Grandfathers can't get access to their Orchard Groves (a familiar Arabian myth if ever there was one!)

There was indeed an Occupation of the Palestinian population in the two decade period between 1967 and the early 1990s. This situation arose because, Israel conquered territory in the West Bank after the 1967 Six Day war was forced upon them by Arab aggression. In the aftermath of the War, Israel unexpectantly came into control of large Palestinian population centres on the West Bank.

However, this period of "evil Israeli" control actually represented the best period of Palestinian harmony and advancement that they have ever known.

As Professor Efraim Karsh states in his seminal article "What Occupation" which can easily be found online.


" At the inception of the occupation, conditions in the territories were quite dire. Life expectancy was low; malnutrition, infectious diseases, and child mortality were rife; and the level of education was very poor. Prior to the 1967 war, fewer than 60 percent of all male adults had been employed, with unemployment among refugees running as high as 83 percent. Within a brief period after the war, Israeli occupation had led to dramatic improvements in general well-being, placing the population of the territories ahead of most of their Arab neighbors.

In the economic sphere, most of this progress was the result of access to the far larger and more advanced Israeli economy: the number of Palestinians working in Israel rose from zero in 1967 to 66,000 in 1975 and 109,000 by 1986, accounting for 35 percent of the employed population of the West Bank and 45 percent in Gaza. Close to 2,000 industrial plants, employing almost half of the work force, were established in the territories under Israeli rule.


During the 1970's, the West Bank and Gaza constituted the fourth fastest-growing economy in the world.

During the 1970's, the West Bank and Gaza constituted the fourth fastest-growing economy in the world -- ahead of such "wonders" as Singapore, Hong Kong, and Korea, and substantially ahead of Israel itself. Although GNP per capita grew somewhat more slowly, the rate was still high by international standards, with per-capita GNP expanding tenfold between 1968 and 1991 from $165 to $1,715 (compared with Jordan's $1,050, Egypt's $600, Turkey's $1,630, and Tunisia's $1,440). By 1999, Palestinian per-capita income was nearly double Syria's, more than four times Yemen's, and 10 percent higher than Jordan's (one of the better off Arab states). Only the oil-rich Gulf states and Lebanon were more affluent.

Under Israeli rule, the Palestinians also made vast progress in social welfare. Perhaps most significantly, mortality rates in the West Bank and Gaza fell by more than two-thirds between 1970 and 1990, while life expectancy rose from 48 years in 1967 to 72 in 2000 (compared with an average of 68 years for all the countries of the Middle East and North Africa). Israeli medical programs reduced the infant-mortality rate of 60 per 1,000 live births in 1968 to 15 per 1,000 in 2000 (in Iraq the rate is 64, in Egypt 40, in Jordan 23, in Syria 22). And under a systematic program of inoculation, childhood diseases like polio, whooping cough, tetanus, and measles were eradicated.

No less remarkable were advances in the Palestinians' standard of living. By 1986, 92.8 percent of the population in the West Bank and Gaza had electricity around the clock, as compared to 20.5 percent in 1967; 85 percent had running water in dwellings, as compared to 16 percent in 1967; 83.5 percent had electric or gas ranges for cooking, as compared to 4 percent in 1967; and so on for refrigerators, televisions, and cars.

Finally, and perhaps most strikingly, during the two decades preceding the intifada of the late 1980's, the number of schoolchildren in the territories grew by 102 percent, and the number of classes by 99 percent, though the population itself had grown by only 28 percent. Even more dramatic was the progress in higher education. At the time of the Israeli occupation of Gaza and the West Bank, not a single university existed in these territories. By the early 1990's, there were seven such institutions, boasting some 16,500 students. Illiteracy rates dropped to 14 percent of adults over age 15, compared with 69 percent in Morocco, 61 percent in Egypt, 45 percent in Tunisia, and 44 percent in Syria. "



In fact, the situation was so good in the "territories" that the external leadership of the Palestinian "Resistance" ie the PLO headed by Yasser Arafat in Tunis waas disturbed that the Palestinian population wasn't suitably inclined to change the status quo. That's why Arafat ordered the first Intifada in 1987...notice the date..that's exactly 2 decades after the 1967 Six Day War which indicates that the first Intifada was premeditaded not a "spontaneous" eruption of Palestinian discontent as Palestinian propagandists would have us believe.

Similarly, Arafat later orchestrated the Second Intifada in October 2000 as a means of not accepting the very generous Clinto and Barak offers of Palestinian Statehood.

In short, the only reason there is an ongoing conflict is because Palestinian leadership likes it that way..they prefer to continue the "struggle" to commit genocide on Israelis and wipe Israel off the map even if they have to martyr every last palestinian to achieve it!!

Stuart Sontag
 
January 27, 2007
Votes: +0

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